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The Anime Appeal

Updated on August 25, 2011
Bubblegum Senpai profile image

Nigel, AKA Bubblegum Senpai was voted most likely to die due to accident involving a cuddle pillow. Haruhi Suzumiya for Life.

Does this look familiar to you???
Does this look familiar to you???

It's pretty obvious I'm obsessed with anime and manga. I don't even bother denying it. I don't think I have a problem, and my life is pretty under control, but I do know some people who cannot function in society because of their obsession with anime. They seem to sometimes get confused between fantasy or reality - something that if it were to happen to anyone else, they would be considered a schizophrenic.

Or worse yet, they become a Hikikomori - a shut in, isolating themselves from others to indulge in their obsession.

So what is it about anime that would make people give up so much of their lives?

Lind is one of the select few elite guard angels in Oh My Goddess!
Lind is one of the select few elite guard angels in Oh My Goddess! | Source

The "A" Factor

Action. Even some of the mellowest, romantic animes and mangas have action, and some of the more extreme ones have several consecutive episodes devoted to single action sequences and battle scenes (Dragonball anyone???). Now, I personally am not a fan of the 'action' genre as such, but even in the more shojo style (mangas and shows geared towards girls, in which the driving force behind the story is usually romantic in nature) there are wonderful action sequences that are very useful to pushing the plot forward. Sailor Moon has them in spades, and even Oh my Goddess! has a three episode battle near the end of season one. And it's not just simply action for the sake of action. It helps push the plot forward and allows us to understand the characters a bit more.

Okay, maybe being married to this girl wouldn't be so bad, but if she's not your true love could you really learn to love her?
Okay, maybe being married to this girl wouldn't be so bad, but if she's not your true love could you really learn to love her? | Source

Fantastic Fantasy

Let's face it. These are ideas we wished we'd come up with:

  • Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya: A young girl has the powers of a god - to destroy and create worlds - but she doesn't know it. So it is up to a group of extraordinary students to keep her happy before she accidentally recreates the world.
  • To Love Ru: A young boy accidentally becomes engaged to a princess from outer space, and must find a way to break off the wedding before it drives a wedge between him and his true love
  • Pokémon: Okay, let's just classify this as fantasy and if for no other reason, wish we could have come up with this idea for the millions of dollars

The fact is, these are some amazing fantasy ideas. and you'll only find them in anime.

You may not hang out with this wacky bunch, but you may find yourselves empathising with their struggles
You may not hang out with this wacky bunch, but you may find yourselves empathising with their struggles | Source

Relatability of the Characters

Despite some of the fantastic fantasy that occurs, they still somehow manage to make the characters persons you can relate to. I can relate, for example, to Haruhi - The god-like character mentioned above. Who doesn't wish every now and then that the world was more exciting - like in the mangas! Or Ash from Pokémon: who doesn't work and train hard with the hope of one day achieving their dream? Who hasn't had to struggle with an ailing loved one, such as the family in My Neighbor Totoro?

We may not all face literal demons every single day, or go off in search of long extinct species of animals, or live next door to vampire, but the struggles that the characters face in these circumstances are really not all that unlike our own.

The Anime Anthem

I guess the total sum of why I became an Otaku is in this song on youtube. It's a parody to the Lucky Star theme "Motteke Sailor Fuku!" which is fitting, because it's an anime about anime.

I hope this helps with understanding why Anime has become so popular. there are more reasons, so perhaps I'll write on those in the future. Arigato and Bye-Byiees!

The Anime Anthem


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    • Bubblegum Senpai profile imageAUTHOR

      Nigel Kirk 

      8 years ago from Calgary, AB, CAN

      Simone>>> Glad to hear! Feel free to share the Anime's that make you most nostalgic as well. I Love hearing from fellow anime fans, or even those who simply appreciate it.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      8 years ago from San Francisco

      You know what I love about anime? The sense of nostalgia (no matter the genre) and attention to detail. Great Hub! Anime FTW!

    • Bubblegum Senpai profile imageAUTHOR

      Nigel Kirk 

      8 years ago from Calgary, AB, CAN

      I appreciate the feedback OddDustin! I have yet to make it to the states for Anime Expo or Otakon, but it's on my bucket list. Maybe I'll make it out there after I finish writing my light novel and companion doujinshi (Independent manga).

      Kexul>>> Thanks! Some Anime's, such as Azumanga Diaoh and Lucky Star have great stories, but no major continuity issues so you can start watching at any episode and it's great! Others, like my personal fave, Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya have very strong continuity and I'm always wanting to know what happens next. Thankfully I own the series on DVD and Have the movie, though I'm hoping to get a dubbed version for my AMV's.

    • Kexul profile image

      Luke Falconberry 

      8 years ago from La Vergne, Tennessee

      another good hub! I simply like anime because the shows and books are always story driven. It's a nice break from the random shows here that don't have a central story line.

    • OddDustin profile image


      8 years ago from Rancho Cucamonga, CA

      Taking my daughter to the Anime Expo in a week in LA for the second year. Not the biggest Anime fan but after going last year I do have to say I had a lot of fun there. We started a Youtube channel where my daughter watches Anime videos and stuff and I watch heavy metal and we talk about them. It was a blast.

    • Bubblegum Senpai profile imageAUTHOR

      Nigel Kirk 

      8 years ago from Calgary, AB, CAN

      Arigato, Fortadam-san. I'm surprised this hub was viewed so quickly, but yes, these are major factors in why people enjoy the shows. Great to see other anime fans on here!

    • Fortadam profile image


      8 years ago from Friday Harbor

      Love this article! I too am a closet, anime obsessed creature. Good to know there are others out there, and you have provided the perfect explanation to justify our attraction!


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